The Luminus Network for New Americans is hosting the Race4TheWorld 5K at Merriweather Post Pavilion on July 4. The run will honor the journey of immigrants from around the world and celebrate the cultural diversity behind what it means to be an American. 

“That means all Americans such as those who have been here and those who are new,” said Mike Mitchell, executive director and CEO of Luminus. “Having the race on July 4 recognizes that America is a nation of immigrants, be it our ancestors who came willfully or not, or those who are arriving today.”

The Luminus Network for New Americans’ Afghan Alliance program helps connect families with the kinds of support they need to flourish. Luminus is hosting the Race4TheWorld 5K at Merriweather Post Pavilion on July 4.

Second, Mitchell said, a 5K is about people, in this case runners, meeting their physical potential, which is exactly what Luminus is about. “We ensure people, specifically the new Americans around us, meet theirs,” he explained. “That is what our volunteering is about, it is what our programs are about and it is what Luminus is all about.”

Mitchell and his team hope to recruit at least 200 runners. Mitchell assures them that the course at the Merriweather Post Pavilion is full of natural summertime beauty. “The course is symbolic of the travels people cover to get here,” Mitchell said, adding that finisher’s medals will be on hand for the happy runners. 

Register before June 20 to receive a race T-shirt.

Also as part of Race4TheWorld, a virtual challenge will group participants from around the world to collectively run, walk or bike 24,901 miles — the circumference of the globe. That challenge began May 6 and runs through July 4.

Luminus, which was known as the Foreign-born Information and Referral Network from 1981 to 2021, provides programs such as immigration legal services, family and community services, and the Afghan Alliance of Maryland, made up of volunteers, donors, and advocates that catalyze direct and indirect support for arrivals.

To register for the 5K race or for the virtual challenge, please visit:

Additional support for this article was provided by Agro Lawn and M&T Bank.